Women’s March

Over 7,000 people marched in Eugene today, me and John and Christina included, in solidarity with people all over the country and the world. There was chanting (“This is what democracy looks like” and “My body, my choice, her body, her choice” and others), a drumline, lots of signs, and a ton of rain.  Supposedly there were speakers, too, but we didn’t see or hear any of them.  Just a lot of friendly people walking together, bumping into each other and apologizing constantly.  No violence, no threats, no crime. (Okay, the newspaper said there was one graffiti incident.)

I don’t have anything profound to say here, not least because it would be in violation of my mission statement.  I’m just glad we went.

The light! It burns!

I am going outside.  I know – AGAIN.  But it’s the first time today, so you know I’m not overdoing it.  We wouldn’t want that.

I’m just going to sit in the backyard for a few minutes to read.  The backyard that needs mowing and watering and weeding.

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The front yard needs almost as much work, but I cleverly took a picture that shows the sidewalk and the neighbor’s yard up the street instead.

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Offputting

We went into every gift shop in each of the three Disney parks we visited.  That’s not an exaggeration – we went into every single one.  For the most part, they carry the same stuff.  Ride gift shops had some ride-specific toys and shirts, and the other shops had some park-specific stuff, but mostly they were the same.  The World Showcase shops in Epcot had the most variation, and it was there I saw the most disturbing thing.

We were in fake Mexico, in the fake market inside.  I leaned forward to look at an anklet, and then threw myself backwards when I got a closer look at the mannequin ankle it was displayed on.  (I may have overreacted a bit, but it took me by surprise.)

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It’s unnerving, right?  Is it a heeled shoe with toes?  A bare foot with a built-in heel?  Makes me shudder just thinking about it.  Someone miscalculated with this one.

Crater Lake is SO freakin’ BLUE

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I usually get annoyed when I skip a day on the ol’ blog here, but I can’t be mad about skipping yesterday.  I didn’t plan to skip – I thought I’d be back home in time to get it done – but it was late because we were out having adventures and doing fun things and taking LOTS of pictures.  I can forgive myself for that.

None of the pictures you’re about to see have been edited, mostly because I don’t really know how to do that, and I’m too lazy to bother with it.  The signs all over Crater Lake National Park say that the water is so blue because it’s all rain and snowmelt and because it’s the deepest freshwater lake in the country. It was incredible.  I didn’t want to look away.  Of course, I did look away because who would believe we were there if we didn’t take pictures?  I love being a tourist.

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I can’t help but like this one, even though we could be ANYwhere since you can’t really see the lake.

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It was hard to leave, even after our hike.  Oh yes – we hiked.  In our infinite wisdom, we chose one of the strenuous hikes, meant to take 2-3 hours and gain over 1000 feet in elevation.  In our defense, there were only two hiking trails within walking distance of where we parked, and the other one was easy and seemed to follow the road we’d just driven down.  BOR-ing.

If you squint, you can see the Crater Lake Lodge in the upper center part of this picture, which is where we started.  I think we were about halfway when I took this one.

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The temperature was in the 70s, and we were working hard, so we were plenty warm, but there was SNOW on the ground.  Not everywhere, certainly, but we had to climb through a slippery melting snowbank to get to the top.  That was the scariest part.  Well, coming back down through the snowbank was the scariest part.

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We did reach the top, though.  Here we are on Garfield Peak, 8000 feet above sea level.  I don’t know how many feet we were above lake level.

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And here’s another terrible selfie (it was really bright out, okay?).

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I think I might have to make that one my profile picture for ALL of my accounts.

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John wants to run down this meadow.  I’m willing to bet it’s steeper than it looks.

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I think I took this next one on the way back down.

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Here we are, tired and happy and soon to be very hungry.

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We left about 6pm (we got there around after noon, close to 1, I think), but it’s 2 and a half hours away, so it was nearly 9 before we got back to Cottage Grove, and after 9 before we ate.  Almost midnight when we got home, still had to shower (covered in sweat and sunscreen – totally gross), and we’re only a little bit sore today.  Our gym has a hot tub.  We may be heading there this afternoon.

Pictures of athletes, not much of substance. Heh, like I ever say anything of substance.

Ignore the random people in this picture.  I think it’s a cool sign.

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We were THIS close to the track….

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…and it was a beautiful day.

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And look!  The women competing in the heptathlon getting ready for their 200m race.  Butts in the air…

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Pushing off the blocks…

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Burst of energy at the beginning of a short, fast race.

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Check it out!  It’s Maggie Malone, she of the cool name and the world-class javelin-throwing arm.

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And HERE is a picture that shows all three of the men who will be running the 5000m race for the US in Rio.  You can see Lagat (check his bib) and the other two are in Chelimo (in the Army shirt in front) and Mead, in the green shirt behind.  took that picture because I was that close.  Such a cool day.

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Olympians

Yesterday was the coolest day.  We went to the next to last day of the US Track and Field Olympic Trials at Hayward Field (home of Prefontaine and Bill Bowerman), and it was INCREDIBLE.  It’s highly unlikely we’ll ever watch the actual Olympic Games in person, but yesterday, we got to watch the best track and field athletes in the US compete for a spot on the US Olympic team – those were actual Olympians, and it was unbelievable to watch.  I mean, I’m saying this even about sports I don’t care about and know nothing about, like the high jump and the javelin throw.  Those were neat to see (and the woman who won the javelin throw has the best name – Maggie Malone), but we were really there for the running events.  Us and everyone else, really.  The place was packed by the time the men’s 5000m final started.  Watching an Olympic (near-Olympic 5K) is NOTHING like watching a neighborhood 5K.  There were 16 men competing, and since we didn’t know anything about any of them, we decided to cheer for the oldest guy, Bernard Lagat, who is 41 years old and holds the American record at this distance.  I got video of them coming around during the first lap.

I forgot to mention that we had AMAZING SEATS.  We were right in the center of the long straight stretch of the track, on the starting line side (behind them – we could see butts in the air at the start), IN THE FIFTH ROW.  We were on the wrong side for the finish, but we could see plenty.

My plan was to get that video (accomplished), then conserve my battery (I was down to 13%) and get another short video as they came around for the final lap.  That first lap was relatively slow, and I wanted to be able to contrast that to the effort they’d be putting in on the final lap.  On a track, a 5K is 12 and a half laps long, so I had plenty of time to watch a few laps and then get ready to record again.  The race was crazy exciting.  Two guys were out front at first, but they tired out and didn’t end up staying in front.  Then there were another two in front (way out front), and then, right at the end, everyone else started catching up.  The guy we were cheering for, Lagat, was in the middle of the pack the whole time…right up until that last half-lap, when he SURGED AHEAD AND WON.  The 41-year-old won the race.  It was incredible, and I was screaming my head off and then his face crumpled in happy tears and so did I.  I was highly susceptible to those athletes’ emotions yesterday.  So was the lady next to me.

Anyway, I’d have video of that last lap (or at the least the part right in front of us, like in the earlier video – I had every intention of cheering, not recording, as they headed to the finish), but my phone chose the moment I pressed the record button to crap out on me and tell me my camera crashed.  SO ANNOYED.  This is the last disappointment I’ll take from you, phone.

You can watch official video of that last lap (like I just did) here.  If you pause the video at 41 seconds and squint, I think you can see John (grey jacket and his hat) and a blur that might be me, 5th row.  Or I might be imagining it.  But we’re there!

It was so cool.  Honestly, seeing this in person was one of my top five reasons for moving to Eugene.  Tomorrow I’ll post some of the pictures I took.

Still not good at it

It’s been six years (SIX YEARS) since my last post like this.  Back in May 2010, I was in Boston for work, and I tried my hand at selfies.  I was using an actual camera, not a phone, and it didn’t have a forward-facing camera, and it was hard.  See attempts here.

Now, six years later, selfies are more of a thing than ever, I have a front-facing camera, and I still can’t do it (god, I’m old).  All I was trying to do last Saturday was take pictures of pretty scenery with my smiling face in front.  (Yes, I could have asked John to take the pictures.  NOT THE POINT.)  How do people do this?

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Okay, a couple were semi-successful.  Here’s one from today with RAINBOWS.

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And hair in my face.  And no smiling.

Our Big Day Out: A Photo Essay

We did make it to the coast, and we did have a wonderfully pleasant day, and with the sun out, temps in the mid-60s felt great.

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We did what usually works out for us: hit the road with a general destination (or at least direction) in mind, and then just see what we see.  You know?  It worked out pretty well.  Our first stop was at the Sea Lion Cave, a place we didn’t know even existed until we noticed it on our handy road atlas.  (Our cell service was pretty much non-existent all day, so we relied on good old-fashioned maps.)

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Apparently, this is where the Stellar sea lions live.  Off to one side was a path to the elevator that takes you down 20 stories to the actual cave (fall and winter home of the sea lions).  Way over in the distance is the Heceta Lighthouse.  We’ll visit that some other trip.

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A similar path in the other direction took us to the lookout where we could see the rocks where about 150 sea lions were sunning or playing in the surf.

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It’s breeding season, and the male sea lions were shouting about it.  Lots of roaring.  They’re a noisy bunch.

We headed further north after that, stopping in Newport for a late lunch and a little browsing.  Newport has a pretty harbor, but it’s a working port and the harborside factories or whatever where they deal with the raw fish and crabs smelled AWFUL.

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Looks nice, smells bad.  But they had a friendly California sea lion willing to pose for his fans.

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After that, we found a mostly empty beach and read for about 3 hours.

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Sunset sent us home.

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Rose garden with actual roses this time

There’s this really nice house I see on my bike ride with a really nice backyard.  The back is all tall wrought-iron fence, and there are rose bushes blooming along the top of the fence every few feet.  Pretty.  The other day I noticed that the yard between the patio and the fence was all dirt, and I briefly wondered what they were going to plant there.  Today as I rode by, I noticed it looked different, but I was a couple minutes past it before I figured out what it was.  (I’m very observant.)  Sod!  They sodded the whole thing.  Maybe it didn’t register because it was still flat?  Very green, very nice.  I might not have noticed at all, or it wouldn’t stuck in my head, except that our yard has fresh sod (fresh from March, I think), and you can still see the edges of each piece.  I wonder how long it takes for it to all mesh together?

Now, have some pretty.

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With sunglasses on, I feel like I’m in disguise

Game Night was great (of course), and my hair cut today went as smoothly as could be expected.  I really like the salon and my new stylist.  The color is great, and the cut WAS perfect, but David got a little snip-happy in front right at the end.  The cut right before the color is how I think I want it, where it’s longer in the front and the angle from the back is more obvious.

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It’ll grow, and I can get it there.  In the meantime, it’s certainly not bad.  It’s just not as much me as I want.  We’ll leave aside that not-me is kind of the point.

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Anyway, I like it. 🙂

 

Rose garden, but without the roses

John and I went for a walk the other day (the one I could barely walk back from), and I took a bunch of pictures of this really nice public rose garden.  Today, though, I’m not showing you any roses.  Sorry.

First this sort of sweet, sort of really strange bench.  Does it want to hug you?  Squeeze the life out of you?  Feel you up inappropriately?  Hard to say.

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Then, this tree.  It’s some sort of cherry tree that was planted in 1847, and now it needs cables to keep it together.  No climbing allowed, sadly.

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It was a really nice morning.

I’m like a mountain goat

I saw a podiatrist today, and while discussing what is wrong with my foot, he referred to my deformity.  Apparently, I am deformed.  Really.  (Mildly, but really.)  The doctor pointed out (although I will be getting it checked out for real) that my right leg is longer than my left leg by enough (no measuring occurred), and that I have been overcompensating for it when I run (he can see by the callus pattern that I roll outwards on my left foot and inwards on my right), and that overcompensation finally caught up with me.  The pain I’ve been feeling is a spasm.  He taped up my foot to help relieve the spasm, and he says I can go back to running pretty much immediately, as long as I ease into it.  If it still hurts by the end of this week, or if it changes how it hurts, I should come back, but there’s no sign of a stress fracture right now.

YAY!!

He also gave me a lift for my left shoe to help make up the difference, and I should wear supportive shoes (like my running shoes) or get supports to put in my other shoes (like my Chucks, which have ZERO support), and only wear shoes like that for the next 6-8 weeks.  I should stay away from flats, sandals, flip-flops, slippers, and any other shoe without support until the spasm is all better.  Oh, and I shouldn’t even wander the house barefoot, so I’ll be wearing supportive shoes ALL the time for a couple of months.

Blah.  But treatable!  So blah is okay.  But now I’m all concerned about how I’ve never noticed I’m uneven.  I have a regular doctor’s appointment in two and a half weeks, so I will be asking about that FOR SURE.

I never knew I looked this:

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Either of these would be okay, though:

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GOATLING!

Regressing

I finally put a basket on my bike!  I’ve been meaning to do that since I bought the bike years ago.  We biked over to the bike store, bought the basket, attached it to the bike, and then biked to Trader Joe’s for bread, milk, and flowers.

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I swear I didn’t just buy the flowers so I could bike home with them peeking out of my new basket.  Now I need a light and a bell.  And possibly a rack to go over the rear wheel.  I can’t wait to bike to the library!  Yes, I’m a grown-up.  I’m a grown-up in Eugene, where EVERYone has a bike.

I am a failing failure who fails

Shoot, I missed a day.  For those of you keeping track at home, yesterday is the first day I have missed since November 22nd.  And….now I’ll just have to give up.  Missing one day is the same as screwing up whole lives, right?  I’d better lock my doors.  The scary witch who lives in the woods at the top of the hill might be after me now.

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This is about two blocks from our house.  Maybe three.  And sadly for the scary witch,  her view out the front door (and down the hill) is of railroad tracks.  Not so scenic.  I should stop giving her reasons to come after me, since she’s obviously a dedicated reader (because who isn’t?), and I have let her down by skipping yesterday.

(Really, I am annoyed.  I could keep it up during a cross-country move but I can’t remember to blog on a normal Sunday? I am disappoint.)

Proof we have furniture!

For those of you who aren’t on Twitter or Instagram, here are some pictures of the house with our furniture in it.  It’s not as neat and clean as it was Tuesday night, so you’ll have to live with three-day-old pictures.  Once our offices look less like disaster areas, I might post those, too.

Bathroom!  Obviously.

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Living room!

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Bedroom!

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Kitchen alcove!

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Kitchen!

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This concludes the photographic tour of our new home.  Rooms not included have been cordoned off with a red velvet rope.  Even we are not allowed in them.